Image: Sugarcane in Queensland Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Original Published Date: 
Friday, June 15, 2018

A new research project led by Professor Graham Goodwin at The University of Newcastle, and funded through the Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage Projects scheme, aims to improve sugar production and electricity co-generation capabilities in the sugar industry by utilising novel control ideas for boiler units.

In the sugar industry, sugarcane residue is used as biofuel for boiler units. Boilers use steam to crystallise sugar and generate electricity. However, variable steam demand and poor fuel consistency severely hinder production.

With partner organisation Wilmar Sugar Pty Ltd, and ARC funding of $240,000, the researchers aim to improve safe operation of boilers, reduce downtime, and maximise electricity generated to the grid. This will provide significant benefits to sugar manufacturing and, more broadly, biofuel energy generation in Australia.

Photo credit: 

Image: Sugarcane in Queensland. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.